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2000 is the Year for Cascading Style Sheets, says O'Reilly Author

May 11, 2000

Sebastopol, CA--Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is poised to make its mark on the Web in 2000, according to Eric A. Meyer, author of the just-released "Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide" (O'Reilly, $34.95).

"Cascading Style Sheets is a standard way to separate a document's structure from its presentation," says Meyer. "This sounds very abstract, but the benefits are quite surprising and profound. In theory, CSS makes one's life easier by creating a centralized description of web document appearance. Any web designer will likely come up against a situation where he or she really should use them, and many will no doubt need CSS to do things they never could do before." But in spite of CCS's strengths, (like any other web language or standard) CSS requires browser support to be effective. Evolving web standards have created browser versioning, which until recently kept CSS from reaching its full potential.

"Browser implementations of CSS1 are rapidly becoming both complete and bug-free. This will allow authors to use CSS with more confidence because one of the biggest barriers to the adoption of CSS has been the fact that browsers handle it inconsistently. Once that problem fades away, so will the reluctance to use it," explains Meyer. "Already, major sites like Amazon.com, CNN.com, and the Internet Movie Database use CSS to enhance their sites. Many other sites are beginning to follow suit-some in small ways, others in big ways. As the new browsers become more widely used, CSS will become a more and more important and necessary part of every web designer's toolbox. Not only that, but the growing popularity of wireless devices means that the Wireless Access Protocol (WAP) is gaining in use. WAP uses CSS to style content which is displayed on wireless devices."

Meyer's "Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide offers a complete, detailed review of CSS1 properties and other aspects of CSS1. Each property is explored individually in detail, with discussions of how each interacts with other properties.

"Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide" also shows how to avoid common mistakes in interpretation. This book is the first major title to cover CSS in a way that acknowledges and describes current browser support, instead of simply describing the way things work in theory. "One problem with using CSS is that it's hard to remember how everything works, and in which browsers," says Meyer. "This book was designed to clear up many of those questions". "Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide" offers both advanced and novice web authors a comprehensive guide to implementation of CSS.

Online Resources

Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide
By Eric A. Meyer
1st Edition May 2000
1-56592-622-6, 496 pages, $34.95

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